Dr. Gerald Pfister received his Master's in Biology/Freshwater Ecology from Innsbruck University, Austria – his homeland. He received his first PhD in Biology/Protistology from Salzburg University, Austria. After 7 years in research dedicated to protozoa in rivers and lakes and the involvement in interdisciplinary ecological studies in Austria and Germany, he moved back to Innsbruck, Austria as head of the bio-optical center at the Institute for Biomedical Aging Research of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. He managed and operated the confocal microscopy as well as the flow cytometry and cell sorting platform for 7 years and wemt on to obtain his second PhD from the Medical University of Innsbruck in Biomedical Sciences. His research focused on the aging of the human immune system and its impact on the naïve T-cell population. Several scientific publications related to flow cytometry, cell sorting and confocal microscopy could be published during this period.
Dr. Pfister has supervised a Master's student, trained students and received certification in animal experimentation, laboratory safety, and fire prevention. He was also elected representative for the worker’s council.
In 2006, Dr. Pfister moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil as postdoctoral researcher and senior operator of the cell sorter platform at FIOCRUZ institute. He was responsible for the operation and maintenance of the platform as well as performing and optimizing the institute’s multicolor flow and sorting experiments. Besides, he implemented good laboratory practice into the sorting facility and published a review on the aging immune system together with the head of the laboratory of thymus research, W. Savino.
Two years later Pfister moved back to Europe to accept the position as European Flow Cytometry Training Specialist for BD Biosciences in Belgium (2008 - 2016). In this position he acquired profound knowledge and experience on hard- and software of flow cytometry instruments, developed his training- and education skills on various flow cytometers and cell sorters and acquired profound technical knowledge and cutting-edge flow applications for over seven years. His responsibilities included training, support, and troubleshooting of high-end analyzers and sorters for international customers from academia, clinics and industry as well as BD-fellows such as service engineers, application specialists, and sales representatives. Courses and workshops were often tailor-made to specific applications and performed in the European training center or in customer’s labs.
Dr. Pfister is a very well-respected member ofthe international Cell Sorting community and has developed new training courses in product- and software demonstrations & roadshows, and in product development and evaluation. His experience includes hiring and people management, as well as planning and coordination of the installation of a brand-new training center in the European headquarters of BD Biosciences in Belgium. In 2014 Dr. Pfister was certified as Cytometrist, CCy (replaced 2017 by ASCP board of certification as: Specialist in Cytometry, SCYM).
Dr. Pfister joined QBRI in 2016 as Flow Cytometry Core Facility Manager and relocated to Qatar together with his wife and their two kids. He considers himself as a positive personality who is curious, open-minded, and always motivated to meet new people and explore new challenges in life. He feels comfortable in communicating in different languages (German, English, French and Portuguese) and is specifically intrigued by living and working in a multicultural environment.